Monday, February 3, 2014

Phangnga Bay - So much more than just James Bond Island

After plenty of days of summer, sun, beach and ocean I wanted to do something different. Therefore, I have decided to visit Phang Nga Bay with Khao Lak Land Discovery.

James Bond Rock
Phang Nga Bay is famous for the so-called James Bond Island from which Richard Moore, in the movie “The Man with the Golden Colt”, 1974, dramatically escaped the villains. But Phang Nga Bay has so much more to offer, which I would like to share with you.

Our trip has started with a 45 minute drive to the harbour where we have swopped the minivan with a typical Thai long-tail boat. We drove past limestone’s and mangrove forest on our way to our first stop – the kayaking station. Lightly drenched from the ride on the long-tail boat (the swell was slightly stronger than expected) we have made our way on a canoe into the mangrove forests.The best part was that we did not have to paddle ourselves, but were paddled by a nice Thai. Thus we were able to enjoy the view and to capture the memories on camera. There was plenty to see. For example, we have seen amazing limestone rocks which are partially protruding up to 300 meters high out of the bright green water. Also, we got to see stalactites and stalagmites along the way. To get into the lagoons we sometimes had to duck in the canoe to pass the narrow passages. 

After the canoe ride, we continued our journey with the long-tail boat to follow the footsteps of Roger Moore. The James Bond Island seemed to be drastically smaller than you would expect it from the movie. Moreover, the stunt of the action hero Richard Moore did not seem as dramatic and dangerous anymore. But still, it was very nice to look at.

Koh Panyee School
Koh Panyee village

Nobody had to go hungry, because our next stop was Koh Panyee, a gypsy village which was entirely built on stilts. Moreover, up to 2000 people life on this stilts village that also provides a school, a mosque and a soccer field which hosts a well known soccer team that is famous all over Thailand. After we walked through the "small town" and visited the Koh Panyee School, we had lunch with a variety of typical Thai-Muslim food. The treats that we had eaten have strengthened us for the rest of the day. This made it easy for us to enjoy the rest of the long-tail boat ride back to the pier.

Tuesday Buddha
Back on the mainland, our nice driver has taken us to the Suwanakuha temple. There, I decided to get blessed by a monk. A bit of luck never hurt anyone, right? After I have felt blessed I marvelled at the huge Buddha statue that can be seen in the temple. It is covered in gold. Our tour guide told us that this is the Tuesday Buddha, which is presented in a lying position. Furthermore, we were able to see and feed monkeys that chose the temple as their headquarters. Before we’ve left the temple I had to get a prophecy that will lead my future. Apparently, if your prophecy is bad you have to leave it behind in the temple. But as my prophecy was outstanding I took it with me outside the temple that it can become reality.

All in all, it was a great day with Khao Lak Land Discovery to explore the Phang Nga Bay. 

Written by Diana Schob

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